Air Force to outsource Middle East communications

Citing the strain on personnel from ongoing operations, the service looks to hire some help.

The strain on personnel from ongoing operations in the Middle East is prompting the Air Force to outsource more of its technical communications support.

The service’s Central Command has issued a draft request for proposals seeking input on contracting out a variety of services “normally performed by a Communications Squadron.”

In the RFP, the command notes that Air Force personnel currently provide communications at U.S.  bases for more than 10,000 military personnel and coalition forces as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. But a dozen years into the operation, the reliance on called-up reservists and personnel kept past their end of service dates has taken a toll.

The Air Force, noting that a past contract proved that the work could be outsourced, is looking to contract work at government-owned facilities in Southwest Asia covering a variety of functional areas, including telephone, commercial satellite, technical control, network administration, HF/UHF/VHF ground radio, commercial, tactical, and Defense red telephone switch operations, inside/outside cable plant support, cable TV support services, communications security, communications planning and engineering, video teleconferencing and military satellite communications.

The contract will cover support for operations Enduring Freedom, Defense Arabian Gulf Mission, Resolute Support and continuing mission requirements of the Defense Department, and include:

  • Knowledge operations management
  • Cyber system operations
  • Cyber surety
  • Client systems
  • Cyber transport
  • Radio frequency transmission systems
  • Spectrum operations
  • Cable/antenna system
  • Communications engineering
  • Communications planning and management.

Responses to the RFP are due by May 15.